Development of a Bio-based Industry Utilizing Organic Waste Streams (Confined Animal Feedlot and Biodiesel Co-Products): Production of Biological Thermoplastics and Natural Fiber-Plastic Composites (NFPCs)

The proposed polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA)-wastewater treatment process represents an application of environmentally benign manufacturing that reduces reliance on fossil fuel, reduces greenhouse gas emissions, and yields a sustainable commodity. By integrating PHA production into wastewater treatment the research team eliminates costs associated with feedstock production; recycle waste carbon that would otherwise be landfilled, land applied, or combusted; and incur negligible additional energy requirements given that wastewater treatment is mandated in most countries. By utilizing unextracted PHA in the manufacture of a commodity, Natural Fiber-Plastic Composites (NFPCs) the research team eliminates the energy and costs associated with extraction in conventional PHA production. NFPCs produced from biologically derived PHA and biosolids represent can be used to offset the cost of advanced wastewater treatment. Both of the industries targeted in this research are fundamentally rural-based, highly relevant and important in the western United States, and rely on the supply of regional feedstocks; integration of a polymer production and NFPC process utilizing the associated waste byproducts would only serve to enhance, diversify, and make more competitive these rural, bio-based industries. More specifically, relative to the SunGrant mission and objectives, the proposed study will do the following: (1) Assess the feasibility of utilizing alternate raw materials for generating products; (2) Develop efficient, economical, and environmentally sound conversion processes for organic-rich waste streams and biomass residues; (3) Develop an integrated system for the conversion of feedstocks into bioproducts; (4) Mitigate environmental impacts associated with biofuel (e.g., biodiesel) production through in a sustainable manner; (5) Identify valuable bioproducts and production technologies; (6) Define useful characteristics of co-products derived from existing bioproduct industries; and (7) Devise strategies to mitigate environmental impacts associated with production of biofuels.

  • Supplemental Notes:
    • Progam information: Advanced Research, Biobased Research


  • English


  • Status: Completed
  • Sponsor Organizations:

    Research and Innovative Technology Administration

    Department of Transportation
    1200 New Jersey Avneue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Project Managers:

    Johnson, Shawn

  • Principal Investigators:

    Coats, Erik R.

  • Start Date: 20070801
  • Expected Completion Date: 0
  • Actual Completion Date: 20090731

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01575586
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Department of Transportation
  • Files: RiP, USDOT
  • Created Date: Sep 9 2015 9:24AM